Film Critic Bias

Discussion in 'Transformers Movie Discussion' started by Ceasar121, Dec 16, 2009.

  1. Ceasar121

    Ceasar121 Wants a Toxitron repaint!

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    Ok. This discussion has been done to death, but the upcoming release of Avatar brings this to my mind.

    I now fully believe that Michael Bay is blacklisted by the the critic community. The main knock on ROTF was that it was all CGI, weak story.

    According to most reviews I've read, and a friend who saw a prerelease, Avatar is beautiful CGI, with a totally cliched story that is never unpredictable. Many critics were saying that "we're not here for the story', and then giving the film a positive review for how it looked.

    Personally, I could care less, I'll probably enjoy Avatar as much as I did ROTF. But it seems strange that ROTF got SLAUGHTERED by critics as being all visual and no substance, and then it seems Avatar might be the same, but it's getting praise.

    Discuss!
     
  2. Sage o' G-fruit

    Sage o' G-fruit Critics gonna critique

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    Yep. Blacklisted by both the critics and online reviewing community.

    Although the critics are usually right.
     
  3. Hobbes-timus Prime

    Hobbes-timus Prime Well-Known Member

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    ROTF had a very poorly constructed story, critically speaking. It was confusing, contradictory, and poorly paced.

    Even a predictable story well constructed will receive better reviews than a poorly constructed story.

    Critics are not opposed to special effects (LOTR, Spider-Man 1 & 2, Avatar, Star Trek are all very favorably reviewed special effects films), but good special effects are an easy target for critics when the rest of the film is weak.
     
  4. shroobmaster

    shroobmaster Well-Known Member

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    The name Michael Bay tends to be a tea-drinker-on-laptop-hate magnet, while James Cameron's name is usually reason for brown-nosing.

    That is no secret to anyone.
     
  5. G1Wheeljack

    G1Wheeljack Well-Known Member

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    You make some good points, and it is true they judged it the second they saw Bay's name attatched to it. But regarding that "they're not here for the story," you also have to consider they're there for the acting. A good performance in a movie can make an average plot seem great. I've hear alot of people use RDJ in Iron Man as a good example of this(though personally I think the plot was a great origin story). And while IMO John Turturro, Shia Lebouf, Peter Cullen & Kevin Dunn did a great job other performances were lacking. There are also several different types of cinematography. With Avatar, I imagine we'll get at least one beautifull panning shot of the planet's flora & fauna, but in ROTF you get barrages of explosions with robots that some may find blurry & hard to see due to them constatnly moving.
     
  6. DaraRex2.0

    DaraRex2.0 I'd totally eat the leaf

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    now in days a lotta the films that are being produced can't be done without a lot of special effects, and some cann't be done with just puppets or whatever. It costs a lot more...but some things you can't do realistically without a whole hour of cgi.

    ROTF might've had better reviews if it wasn't Pornformers. Srsly, i was crushed to reliaze I'd waited 2 whole years for a sex toy commercial. I haven't seen Avy yet but if it has a decent story, and just a story that at least flows, plus gushing visual effects (yay), then it'd get better reviews and deserve them. I have a feelin though it's more of a 'hey, here's what we can do now, let's write something better and stab this to it.' At least that I canm hope for.

    *insert random Bay hate here*
     
  7. Jetstorm

    Jetstorm Wielder of the Keyblade

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    How exactly was the story confusing? lol
     
  8. Wheeljack_Prime

    Wheeljack_Prime Don't eat me

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    The critics all need some scapegoat/outlet for hate. Armageddon and Pearl Harbor made Bay the go-to I guess. 20 theoretical internet bucks says that if either movie was directed by someone else, yet was otherwise literally the exact same movie, that the tomatometer for TF1 would be 75% instead of 57% and that ROTF would be 46% instead of 19%.

    I remember reading Rolling Stone's review for both films. It didn't even entertain the notion of giving either a good grade simply because of Bay's involvement. No reason to think that reviewer's the only one. Bay's certainly not the only director in Hollywood guilty of these "crimes".
     
  9. Bumblethumper

    Bumblethumper old misery guts

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    I'll agree with that. Though on the same token, some films seem to put all their energy into bowling us over with visual effects and spectacle, as if to distract from other inadequacies. Hard to say whether it's the symptom or the disease.

    I don't think Michael Bay has been 'blacklisted'. He got a lot of good reviews for TF1. But critics tend to be biased against bad movies. When he makes a movie that is conspicuously bad, critics will pounce on it. It makes for good copy.
     
  10. Optimus Prime

    Optimus Prime Roll out! TFW2005 Supporter

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    See my posts in the News/Rumors "RotF Nominated for Best VFX" thread...

    On a related note, I find it very interesting that, despite many (if not most) of the Avatar reviews I've seen saying that the story is pretty bad but the visuals are great, that Avatar is ALREADY NOMINATED FOR BEST PICTURE (Drama) for Golden Globes, even though it hasn't even been released yet.
    And "Best Director," of course.
    As movie reviewer/director John Campea said, "Anyone else think it's strange that 'Avatar' is advertising the director more than the actual movie?"
     
  11. Tyrannosaur

    Tyrannosaur 100% Sarcastic Saurian

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    I will most likely enjoy Avatar, but reading many of the critics' reviews they're practically sucking Cameron's dick, whereas in their review for ROTF it's like the damn movie slaughtered their entire family.

    Though ROTF had a weak plot, thats what Critics go for. The plot of a movie is basically the heart of the movie. If the heart is weak, that person isn't really gonna be all that healthy. But still, bring on Avatar. It looks fantastic!
     
  12. Ephland

    Ephland Let's Go Rangers

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    And yet, I doubt Avatar busts $400 million. I'm sure it will do very well and probably top out at around $350m.

    Regarding the whole bias thing, I think of it as more of a trend thing. People tend to like/dislike things based more upon what other people are saying, rather than their own educated opinion.
     
  13. Tyrannosaur

    Tyrannosaur 100% Sarcastic Saurian

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    That is true. I'm getting sick of all these "OMG WURST MOVIE EVAR" complaints from critics and basement dwellers alike. Ugh. Someone strap these idiots down infront of Garbage Pail Kids and make them watch it over and over again until their orifices start bleeding.
     
  14. Optimus Prime

    Optimus Prime Roll out! TFW2005 Supporter

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    Exactly; critics jump on the hate wagon because they don't want to get singled out for admitting that they enjoyed a film that "big name" critics didn't like.
    As a movie reviewer for my high school and college newspapers, I was guilty of this on a couple of occasions, so I know that it does happen. For example, I went to see "300" with all the negative reviews floating around in my mind, and when I left I wrote a pretty negative review myself based on the points other critics had brought up. People were pretty upset with that review, and when I rewatched the movie I realized that I actually enjoyed it when I put preconcieved bias aside.
     
  15. Ceasar121

    Ceasar121 Wants a Toxitron repaint!

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    I guess my thing is this... Most of the reviews, and my friend, agreed the characters in Avatar are... cardboard cutout movie stereotypes, and that the ONLY reason they enjoyed the movie was the CGI.

    Part of me wonders if Bay (James Cameron's illegitimate son :D ) will watch this and take cues from it. Then I wonder is he uses that renewed visual sense for TF3, will it still get the ax from critics.

    That said, I'm set to enjoy Avatar, but it bothers me that the plot of ROTF was based, when it's easy to follow... And I still fail to see how you can't suspend your beliefs when you are watching a movie about GIANT ROBOTS FROM SPACE. Doesn't that in itself preclude some improbable and unimaginable things happening?
     
  16. jamjam101

    jamjam101 Well-Known Member

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    i highly doubt avatar it will break $400M domestically. and based on cameron's previous films critics like to suck dick. imagine cameron made TF it would be praised all over and possibly 4 golden glob nominations. there are cult favorites like John Favraue (IRON MAN getting 93 on RT?!! WHAT THE FUCK?!!!) Quintin Tarintino (although Inglorious Basterds i loved) and ofcourse Cameron who the critics will praise no matter what shit they spread across the screen.
    but Bay is definately blacklisted. if TF3 gets 80% + by audiences and slashed by critics, we all see the truth. even if it was everything we ALL wanted (plot, acting etc..) from a Bay and TF3, it will still be bashed
     
  17. Ra88

    Ra88 Dutchman!

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    The CGI in Avatar is used for both action and to portray convincing characters in an unbelievable world. RotF's CGI was bots smashing each other up, with the exception of a few moments. Hell, didn't a lot of you complain that the bots were merely there as fodder and not characters?

    Not to mention that RotF was too...Well...Disjointed and rushed. Even the action felt weird at times.

    EDIT: And funny that someone said in this thread that critics are brown nosing Cameron, when parts of the fandom are doing EXACTLY the same with Bay...
     
  18. Optimus Prime

    Optimus Prime Roll out! TFW2005 Supporter

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    I wonder what critics would say if JC had directed the Transformers movies instead of Bay, and if they were exactly the same as they are now...

    As for the RotF plot, I don't see how people say they don't understand it. Sure, there are a few parts that don't make sense, that could be explained more, and there are plot holes here and there, but almost every movie is like this. People complain that there was "no plot" and "no story" but if I had time, I could easily summarize the plot and story. My only complaints with the movie were the cheesy, crude humor (dogs humping, Simmons's jockstrap, Devastator's balls, Wheelie humping Mikaela's leg), the lack of explanation behind the Fallen, the relative uselessness of the Fallen, and I thought that the Fallen's "we live among you" broadcast was a little cringe-worthy. Aside from that, I really enjoyed it. The action was great, I thought the Twins were funny (definitely not the "Worst examples of racism in a movie since blackface minstrelry"), the VFX were better, the robot screen time and interaction was better, and I thought it was overall better than the first movie.
    Critics, on the other hand, just take the same tired complaints from other critics, add their own 2 cents to those complaints, and churn out a negative review. In nearly all of the negative reviews I read, there was literally not ONE SINGLE POSITIVE COMMENT about anything in the movie. Nothing at all. Just "VFX sucked, acting sucked, humor sucked, Bay sucks, movie's just a toy/car commercial, story sucked, there was no plot, Bay sucks, movie was loud/stupid, movie was too long, etc."
    That was one complaint that stuck out to me in a lot of the reviews: "The movie was way too long compared to the first one," they said. It was, what, four minutes longer? Come on.

    I'm going to try hard to avoid reviews for TF3, but this time around I wouldn't be surprised if Ebert hired skywriters and blimps to write "TRANSFORMERS 3 IS UTTER GARBAGE!" over every city and made it mandatory to teach children in school that Michael Bay is worse than Hitler.


    Edit:
    I'm not brown-nosing Bay at all; I just think Transformers deserves more credit and does NOT deserve the absolutely vicious hatred directed towards it by critics. Do you, honestly, think RotF was the worst movie of the entire decade? Do you think it was worse than Santa Claus Conquers the Martians? I'm trying to point out that the bias against him in this case is unfair. Like I said, there were parts I didn't like in Transformers and in RotF. He makes action movies, not intellectual movies. Movies for entertainment, not deep philosophical messages. His movies are dumb; take "Bad Boys" and "Bad Boys II," for example. But they're FUN TO WATCH. That's what critics lack: the ability to JUST ENJOY A MOVIE. No, nowadays it's gotta be some emotional or political message that makes the movie great.
    Either that, or I'm a complete idiot and truly "unevolved" and "a waste of oxygen" because I happen to enjoy popcorn flicks.
     
    Last edited: Dec 16, 2009
  19. G1Wheeljack

    G1Wheeljack Well-Known Member

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    This whole thread wants me to try a little experiment & select a few well known movie critics to sit down & watch a movie that I give them no information about regarding directors or writers to see what they think of it before & after they know who was responsible. Unfortunately I don't have the time or resources to do so.
     
  20. Wheeljack_Prime

    Wheeljack_Prime Don't eat me

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    I got an idea! Why doesn't Bay use a ghost identity for directing it? See how that works out in regards to critical reception?

    Transformers 3: A Film by Frank Cullen
     

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